Shoreline hosts Chemistry Olympiad

Students competed in a lab portion of the test and had to show not only their knowledge but skills in a lab setting.

Students competed in a lab portion of the test and had to show not only their knowledge but skills in a lab setting. More photos can be found on flickr.

Shoreline Community College played host to another Olympiad on Friday, April 25, 2014; this time it was Chemistry. The Puget Sound section of the American Chemical Society (ACS) had 10 high school students from western Washington participate in a three-part competition held on campus.

“These students are the finalists for a national competition,” Clarita Bhat, Shoreline faculty member and chair of the Puget Sound section of the ACS said. “They have been chosen out of a pool and are the 10 best we got from local competitions.”

Bhat said the competitions are being held across the US simultaneously. If the students perform well enough, they have the chance to be one of 20 that are chosen to attend a study camp. From there they compete for a chance to be one of four representatives for the United States at the International Chemistry Olympiad, hosted in Hanoi, Vietnam this year.

IMG_5776The test focused on the students’ knowledge in general chemistry, a little bit of organic chemistry and lab skills. During the lab portion of the test, the students had to devise an experiment on their own with the equipment given and be able to show their skills in the lab. The three parts of the test took about five hours for the students to complete.

“This event gives them an opportunity,” Bhat said. “They have a chance to really do something and excel and show their knowledge. They have all shown they were excellent in chemistry and this gives them the chance to show that.”

All students competing receive certificates and can cite their participation on college applications.

The event has been hosted at Shoreline before. The campus provides the students with locations to take the written portions as well as lab tests with all of the equipment that they need.

“These are dedicated students that have truly excelled in their own area,” Bhat said. “And Shoreline has the equipment needed to facilitate the Olympiad.”

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